The Racine Unified School District will convert the practice field at Pritchard Park into a state-of-the-art football facility with artificial turf, proper seating, goal posts and other amenities, thanks in part to a $250,000 grant from the Green Bay Packers through the National Football League Foundation Grassroots Program.
The grant from the Packers, the NFL Foundation, and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) is part of more than $3 million in field refurbishment awards allocated this year. This is the 17th grant secured by the Packers since 1998 for Wisconsin organizations working on new or renovated athletic fields and stadiums, with the cumulative total now at $2.61 million.
The NFL Foundation/LISC Grassroots Field Grant – a partnership between the NFL Foundation and LISC, the nation's leading community development support organization – has supported the construction or renovation of 365 football fields nationwide since 1998. During that time, the NFL Foundation has granted nearly $61 million to revitalize playing fields in underserved neighborhoods. Fields are newly built or significantly renovated, with improvements such as irrigation systems, lights, bleachers, scoreboards, goal posts and turf. Grassroots grants are issued once established funding thresholds are reached for each project.
"The NFL Foundation/LISC Grassroots Grant will support our collaborative efforts with Racine County to create state-of-the-art athletic facilities for the Racine community," said Dr. Eric Gallien, RUSD superintendent. "RUSD is thankful to the NFL Foundation and LISC for recognizing the need in our community and helping us to realize our vision. This will benefit countless youth and families for many years to come."
"This grant award marks another momentous step in bringing our vision for Pritchard Park to life," said Racine County Executive Jonathan Delagrave. "As we move forward on the next phase of the SC Johnson Community Sports Complex, we are grateful and ecstatic that the NFL Foundation and LISC value and support this project and will help us create a true community asset for RUSD and Racine County as a whole."
LISC identifies local, nonprofit, community-based agencies that have an interest in building or refurbishing football fields in schools and neighborhood parks. Through the program, local agencies are provided with the necessary financing and technical assistance to improve the quality and safety of fields in their communities. The agencies oversee the construction, maintenance and programming of the fields.
"Safe, accessible places to play and exercise are part of what makes neighborhoods healthy and sustainable," said Beverly Smith, LISC's Vice President of Sports & Recreation. "Our partnership with the NFL Foundation is devoted to increasing the quality and number of those places."
About the NFL Foundation
The National Football League Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of those touched by the game of football – from players at all levels to communities across the country. The NFL Foundation represents the 32 NFL clubs and supports the health, safety and wellness of athletes, youth football, and the communities that support our game. For more information on The NFL Foundation, visit: NFLFoundation.org.
With residents and partners, LISC forges resilient and inclusive communities of opportunity across America- great places to live, work, visit, do business and raise families. Since 1980, LISC has invested $20 billion to build or rehab 376,000 affordable homes and apartments and develop 63,000 square feet of retail, community and educational space- including athletic facilities and other recreational space. For more information, visit www.lisc.org.